The Man Who established the Church that is of God
THE IGLESIA NI CRISTO firmly upholds the belief that the Lord Jesus Christ is man in nature (John 8:40; I Tim. 2:5; Acts 2:22; Matt. 1:20) and that it was He Who established this Church (Matt. 16:18).
As such, it was aptly called by the apostles Church Of Christ (Acts 20:28 Lamsa Translation). However, there are those who argue that this would imply that the Church established by Christ is a church of man and not of God. They are mistaken.
The biblical teaching that Christ is man does not necessarily mean that the Church He has founded is merely a church of man. It does not contradict the truth that the Church Of Christ is of God.
The Bible clearly teaches that to be of God, one must first be of Christ. The Savior Himself has said:
“… I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6 NKJV)
The Bible further teaches that to be of Christ and partake of His grace of salvation, one must first be drawn by God to His Son. Christ attests:
“No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.” (John 6:44 NKJV)
Those who have been drawn or given to Christ by the Father are of God, as Jesus teaches:
“I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them.” (John 17:9-10 New International Version)
It is clear, then, that those of Christ—that is, those who are in His Church (Matt. 16:18)—are also of God. These teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ were not His own but had been taught to Him by the Father in heaven—the only true God (John 8:28; 17:1, 3). Even the works that Christ did were not His own but those of His Father (John 5:36).
The Church that Christ established does belong to God for what is followed and obeyed therein are not commandments of men but the teachings of the Almighty Father. Therefore, the Church Of Christ, established by the man Jesus, is definitely of God.